2008 Lions Rose Parade Float
Jan
1

Palmer’s Blog: Matteo’s Dream

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Happy New Year!

Lions Clubs International is celebrating 2014 by showcasing what Lions do every day – make dreams come true in their community.

Since 1992, Lions in California have been decorating floats for the Annual Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, Calif. This year the parade’s theme is Dreams Come True and Lions selected Matteo’s Dream, an inclusive playground built by Lions for children of all abilities, as the inspiration for their float design. Anne and I have the honor of riding the Lions float in this year’s Rose Parade.

Help us celebrate by sharing the wonderful story behind the float and be sure to tune into see the float live on television this morning.

Here’s everything you need to know about this year’s float.

Lions, thanks for sharing Matteo’s Dream, and for making dreams come true every day. Continue to follow your dream in 2014!

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Lions Clubs International
Dec
31

Webinar: Effective Club Meetings

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There is still time to register for one of Leadership Development’s most popular webinars, Effective Club Meetings, which returns on January 8.

Managing effective and efficient meetings is critical to club productivity and member satisfaction, and an indispensable pillar of good leadership. In this webinar, we will discuss the components of effective meeting management, including:

  • Meeting preparation
  • Managing discussions and decisions
  • Meeting evaluation
  • Post-meeting follow up

In addition we will review the available LCI meeting management training resources.  If you are invested in improving your club meetings, this webinar will provide you with the tools to do so, so don’t miss it!  Register today at the  LCI Webinar page, or click the link below.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014
12:00 pm CST Chicago time

How would you like to improve your club meetings?

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2013 Lions Rose Parade Float
Dec
30

#MatteosDream: Rose Float Judging

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How Judging Works at the Rose Parade

All floats entered in the Annual Tournament of Roses Parade are special, but less than half of all the floats receive special accolades, and December 31st is judgment day in Pasadena.

“Most people don’t realize that the judging actually takes place the day before the actual parade,” said Past District Governor Jon Casteel, who is also Vice President of Lions Float Inc. “We gather everyone who’s riding on the float and they have to smile and wave like they’re actually riding in the Parade.”

This year the Tournament of Roses has selected Cheryl Cecchetto, James Folsom and René van Rems to be float judges for the 125th Rose Parade. Twenty-four of the 46 floral masterpieces entered in the parade will receive awards in a variety of categories and specifications. Judges’ scores will be based on criteria such as creative design, floral craftsmanship, artistic merit, computerized animation, thematic interpretation, floral and color presentation and dramatic impact. Cecchetto, Folsom and van Rems were selected by the Tournament’s Judging Committee, chaired by Richard De Jesu. Tournament of Roses President Scott Jenkins announces the winning floats the morning of January 1, 2014.

“Rose Parade floats are designed, built and decorated by teams who put heart and soul into each unique presentation,” said De Jesu. “Our esteemed panel of judges looks at each float through a creative lens and identifies those elements that are most entertaining to viewers. All three judges bring a diverse set of skills that complement each other’s knowledge in their profession.”

You can read more about the judges on the Tournament of Roses website here.

The Lions Rose Parade Float: Matteo’s Dream

Matteo’s Dream, an inclusive playground built by Lions in Concord, Calif., for children of all abilities, was selected as the inspiration for this year’s float design. You can read more about it here.

It’s the first time Lions have ever selected an actual project instead of a general concept as their float design. Hopes are high that their float entry this year will take home one of the coveted trophies.

Rose Parade Trophies

Below is a list of some of the trophies awarded annual at the parade from Pasadena Star:

  • Governor’s Trophy: Best depiction of life in California.
  • Grand Marshal’s Trophy: Most creative concept and design.
  • Bob Hope Humor Trophy:Most comical and amusing.
  • International Trophy: Most beautiful entry from outside the United States.
  • Isabella Coleman Trophy: Best presentation of color and color harmony.
  • Judge’s Special Trophy: Outstanding showmanship and dramatic impact.
  • Lathrop K. Leishman Trophy: Most beautiful entry from a noncommercial sponsor.
  • Mayor’s Trophy: Most outstanding city entry.
  • National Trophy: Best depiction of life in the United States.
  • Past Presidents’ Trophy: Most innovative use of both floral and non-floral materials.
  • President’s Trophy: Most effective use and presentation of flowers.
  • Princesses’ Trophy: Most beautiful entry less than 35 feet in length.
  • Queen’s Trophy: Best use of roses.
  • Theme Trophy: Best presentation of the Rose Parade theme. The 2014 theme is “Dreams Come True.”
  • Tournament Special Trophy: Exceptional merit in multiple classifications.
  • Tournament Volunteers’ Trophy: Best floral design of parade theme less than 35 feet in length.

#MatteosDream Photo Contests

Lions Clubs International is showing support by hosting the first-ever social media contest on Facebook and Instagram. We’re giving several chances to win an official Matteo’s Dream Rose Parade commemorative pin.  You can read more details about the contest and the official rules here.

Additionally, we are asking Lions everywhere to continue sharing the YouTube video in an effort to spread the word about the unique story behind the float design.

Also, be sure to tune in on January 1, 2014 to see if Lions will take home one of the prestigious trophies.

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Dec
30

LQ: Outreach to Afghanistan

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In this segment of the Lions Quarterly (LQ), Lions and Leos in Hawaii reach out to people in Afghanistan. Projects include the “Socks for Sisters” program, which was started after Leos sent school supplies and backpacks to young girls in Afghanistan and discovered that socks were also needed. The Lions and Leos also collect, sort and recycle used eyeglasses to send on missions to Afghanistan. They connect with Lions in Afghanistan through Skype to discuss community needs and plan new projects.

Watch the video above to see how these Lions and Leos are making a global impact.

How does your Lions club reach out to communities across the globe?

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Lions Clubs International
Dec
29

#MatteosDream: History of Lions Floats

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Lions Clubs International has an interesting history participating in the Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year’s Day in Pasadena, Calif. It was a history that nearly didn’t happen.

“The first Rose Parade Lions entered was in 1948,” said Past District Governor Jon Casteel, who is a historian of Lions in the Rose Parade. “They designed, built and rode in the float. But it was so much work, they decided to never do it again.”

The Tournament of Roses Parade began on Jan. 1, 1980. It was to be an American version of the festival of Roses in Nice, France. You can read more about it here.

Since it first began, participation in the international event is by invitation only. When the Lions were invited to participate in the 59th Annual Rose Parade, it seemed like an opportunity too good to pass up.

Footage from that parade can be seen on YouTube, courtesy of a grandfather who happened to be filming from the crowd that day. The Lion’s float can be seen at 4:14 on the video.

While the Lions decided to decline invitations from the Tournament of Roses Association, they changed their mind in 1967.

Lions entered the parade and showcased a float for a second time on Jan. 1, 1968. However, like their first entry, they handled all the designing, constructing and decorating of their float. Again, it proved to be too much work and Lions vowed to never enter the parade again, according to Casteel.

But in 1992, Lions decided to accept the invitation under the guidance of then International President Donald E. Baker to participate in the parade.  The third time was the charm.

Lions Clubs International

Lions Float Inc., a non-profit corporation, was formed in 1994 to direct the preparation and funding of the Lions float in the parade.  It’s a year-round activity involving the designing, fundraising and coordinating of volunteer decoration of the float in December. To raise these funds, Lions Float, Inc. sells a variety of commemorative items such as pins, shirts, license-plate frames, sun shades, antenna balls and hats and offers fellowships for donations honoring PIP Banker and others.

Lions Clubs International’s float in the 125th Annual Tournament of Roses Parade marks a special occasion. It’s the first time Lions have chosen a specific service project as the inspiration behind the float design.

By now many have read and shared the unique story of Matteo’s Dream, a playground in Concord, Calif., the Lions built for a little boy who was blind and suffered from cerebral palsy. It was his parents dream to have a playground where their son, who was bound to a wheelchair, could play outside with other children. Lions answered the call and made their dream come true.

Lions Clubs International is showing support by hosting our first-ever social media contest on Facebook and Instagram. We’re giving several chances to win an official Matteo’s Dream Rose Parade commemorative pin.  You can read more details about the contest and the official rules here.

Additionally, we are asking Lions everywhere to continue sharing the YouTube video in an effort to spread the word about the unique story behind the float design.

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